Once when he was standing on the shore of Lake Gennesaret, the crowd was pushing in on him to better hear the Word of God. He noticed two boats tied up. The fishermen had just left them and were out scrubbing their nets. He climbed into the boat that was Simon’s and asked him to put out a little from the shore. Sitting there, using the boat for a pulpit, he taught the crowd.
When he finished teaching, he said to Simon, “Push out into deep water and let your nets out for a catch.”
Simon said, “Master, we’ve been fishing hard all night and haven’t caught even a minnow. But if you say so, I’ll let out the nets.” It was no sooner said than done—a huge haul of fish, straining the nets past capacity. They waved to their partners in the other boat to come help them. They filled both boats, nearly swamping them with the catch.
It seems that perhaps Simon has some familiarity with Jesus at this point. Jesus got into his boat and told him to take it out from the shore and then push out into the deep water. I always picture Jesus as having a compelling voice and look - one that you just want to respond to with a YES. Simon obeys and he is rewarded with a hug catch of fish that was so big that he had to call for help.
The phrase that caught my attention was, "push out into the deep water."
It made me think that we are all pretty comfortable in the shallow water.
*You can see the bottom.
*You don't have to put your head under the water.
*You don't have to know how to swim.
*You can easily get out of the water.
*It feels safe.
Some of us have been playing around in the shallow waters of our faith for some time. We believe and we even do some good things. We like to listen to others teach about faith and we love our other believing friends. It is a nice place to be.
But, is there a cost to staying in the shallow water?
YES - I believe there is.
Jesus calls us out into the deep.
I want to be submerged in the deep with water all around me.
*I don't need to see the bottom, because I trust the One who called me here.
*I want to get completely, soaking wet with the my head under the living water.
*I want to learn how to swim - to be who Jesus created me to be.
*I am not relying on my own strength to get me out of the water. The One who walks on the water is there with me.
*I don't need to feel safe. I can rest in the Lord's provision and protection.
I'm tired of playing in the shallow end. I want to launch out into the deep and see what the Lord can do. Peter obeyed -- God brought in the catch.
I want to be in the deep with the risk takers. I want to go beyond my own strength so that His strength is revealed and celebrated.
Let's push out into the deep.
Let's take a risk.
Let's watch God MOVE.
Come on . . . get your hair wet.